There’s an old saying that the road to heaven is paved with paw prints.

           It’s the type of philosophy that the team at the Gnaw Bone Dog Spa on Main Street in Hailey buys into whole-heartedly.

            “We are all dog lovers and owners here, just like a lot of people in this community,” co-owner Chapman Root said, from the state-of-the-art grooming facility.

            Our community’s affection for dogs is what inspired Chapman and business partner, Jaime Stam, to open Gnaw Bone just over a year ago.

            “We saw a need for grooming and dog care services in Hailey,” Chapman said, noting that the Wood River Valley’s famous love for canines is “not quite Paris, but there are lots of places around here where you can enjoy time with your dog.”

            From walks along the Hailey Greenway to grabbing coffee at Café Della to doing errands at Thunder Paws, Chapman and Jaime often have their six dogs in tow—just like most of us local dog owners. Of course, all this playing in the rugged environment of the Northern Rockies can be tough on our canines. That’s why the team at Gnaw Bone feels lucky to have Carmen Dellos.

            Carmen has been grooming dogs locally for 18 years. She has a large and loyal following with everything from show dogs to shelter rescues.

            “Carmen really knows what she’s doing and she makes it easy for the dogs and their owners,” Jaime said. “It’s nice to see how she can take a dog that’s dirty, matted down and lacking self esteem and transform it. The owners are amazed and so are their dogs.”

            From California to Seattle to Challis and throughout the Wood River Valley, dog owners come from near and far to Gnaw Bone thanks to Carmen’s skill and the cleanliness of the facility. Chapman said the team prides itself on making sure the facility is meticulous and that the customers—both the ones with tails and their owners—are treated properly.

            “From pound mutts to AKC winners, we try to do what’s right for every dog and its owner,” Chapman said, before passing on credit for the success of the small business. “The real reason this place is so great and attractive to bring your dog is because of the women who work here.”

            Carmen said that coming to work for Gnaw Bone after stints in Sun Valley and Bellevue is the “best decision I’ve ever made. I love it here.”

            It’s easy to see Carmen and her daughter, Hailee, who’s training to be a groomer, working away most days from the store’s large bay windows. If they usually look happy, it should come as no surprise.

The team at Gnaw Bone wants to be an asset for our dog-loving community, and by the looks of all the tail wagging going on, they’re reaching their goal.

            To find out more about Gnaw Bone Dog Spa, go to or call 208-727-7325.

By Mike McKenna

This story originally appeared in the Weekly Sun.

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